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Track Noob - Haslam Race School

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TheArchitect
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PostPosted: 18:21 - 19 Jan 2017    Post subject: Track Noob - Haslam Race School Reply with quote

Hi

I've never been on a track and would like to start. I've checked out past posts about the Haslam school and understand it's more of an experience day rather than a full on track day, which is fine for me as that's all i'm after at the moment.

Seeing as I'm new to this I don't want to invest in the full leathers needed for a track day in case I hate it or don't get round to doing it again any time soon, so can anyone tell me if the Haslam place provides leathers as part of the price or is it extra? I have a lid, proper leather gloves and boots that are suitable for track so for me I just need the leather suit.

Also, do they provide the bike as part of the price or is that extra?

many thanks Thumbs Up
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 18:38 - 19 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't do it, do a track day on your own bike. Borrow or buy secondhand leathers.

The Haslam school and many others are good if you've already got track experience, but not so good as the first outing. Although I've also heard what you have about it being more of an experience day, so perhaps that doesn't matter so much.

Most track day organisers will offer free tuition from experienced racers/instructors at every track day, so this makes the Haslam school an overpriced bike rental day really.
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BrownTrousers
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PostPosted: 19:04 - 19 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I did it 18 months ago they did provide all leathers as part of the price.
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Ste
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PostPosted: 19:52 - 19 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

What MarJay says. Thumbs Up

A set of leathers is a useful thing to own anyway.

You've already got a more than suitable bike so there's no need to rent one and you'll learn more on your own bike.
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TheArchitect
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PostPosted: 09:57 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Noted - thanks for replies all

Reason I was interested in the experience day was because I am a total beginner to track riding. I assumed that's how most people get started before doing proper organised track days.
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Joe
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PostPosted: 10:28 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did Ron Haslam a few years back, I enjoyed it as it was my first time on track, but then again, I won a place so it cost me nothing. Since then, having done multiple track days, I'd say go straight for them instead, far better value and much more track time. Track riding is very safe, there's plenty of people tottering around in novice, just join them and build up speed slowly.
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 11:25 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheArchitect wrote:
Noted - thanks for replies all

Reason I was interested in the experience day was because I am a total beginner to track riding. I assumed that's how most people get started before doing proper organised track days.


Nope, My first trackday was at Snetterton in 2002 on my new SV650S. I did go with an experienced racer but he was on his MZ race bike, so was also in novice and probably one of the slowest. I didn't exactly wobble around, but it wasn't that intimidating and it was on one of the fastest circuits in the UK. Since then I was hooked, and I particularly enjoy trackdays at Cadwell Park.

Loads of people do this, and there are even some novice only trackdays you can do.
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G
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PostPosted: 12:11 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

My last set of leathers cost me 20 on ebay.
A little scuffed, but got some barely used sliders included, which would have cost 20+ to buy new!

So I'd keep an eye out for some cheap leathers and go for a trackday.

No limits offer free tuition - you may well be able to blag them for a couple of sessions - when you only get three sessions with Ron Haslam anyway I think, that's not far off!

If you get along to one where there's some BCF people around, sure you can some extra tips/help etc too Smile.
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 13:13 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

G wrote:

If you get along to one where there's some BCF people around, sure you can some extra tips/help etc too Smile.


I'm a bit rusty and probably would do another day in Novice at the beginning of this year, so if the times work out I'd be happy to help out. I'm not super quick but at least I know the theory! Smile
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skatefreak
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PostPosted: 14:45 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Track day FTW.
Start off at your own pace and gain a confidence before worrying about tuition Smile

Not heard anyone mention it but on the first sighting laps of the day if you get as far up front as you can (maybe not on your very first track day) and you'll get the benefit of following the 'race line' (on MSV days at least). Either that or keep an eye open and try spot someone getting 'tuition'. The format is usually the instructor will lead the 'student' around for a few laps, showing them the lines and then follow for the remainder of the session followed up with feedback in the pits. If you can get close enough (without getting in the way of course), you can observe the instructor and learn more about the racing line (although no instructor feedback of course). Maybe try and find someone to go with as well, 100x better to spend the day with company Smile

Get yourself out there, there will be plenty of people in the novice group that are new.
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TheArchitect
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PostPosted: 14:56 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheers, all for the feedback and thanks MarJay for the offer, very kind.

I'll have a dig around the tracks close to the south east and see what the dates are for the novice sessions. I already knew about these but thought by novice they meant "been before but still slow", not "never set foot on a track before"!

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G
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PostPosted: 15:01 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Plenty on at Brands Indy - not the cheapest, but easy for you to get to.

I'm having a bit of a break to let dodgy shoulders heal, but hope to be there a good bit hoping IO can sort them, as the track's about 40 minutes away from me and I've got some flexibility this year.

And yes - most people's first track experience is in the novice group.
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Ste
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PostPosted: 15:04 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just watch out for riders pwning the novice group who end up in the gravel.
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 15:44 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheArchitect wrote:
Cheers, all for the feedback and thanks MarJay for the offer, very kind.

I'll have a dig around the tracks close to the south east and see what the dates are for the novice sessions. I already knew about these but thought by novice they meant "been before but still slow", not "never set foot on a track before"!

Thumbs Up


If you're properly in the South East Lydden Hill is a good shout too.
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waffles
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PostPosted: 21:53 - 20 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have also done the Ron Haslam thing before I did any track days and while it was good fun, people took it way too seriously. You get a few sessions and some classroom time but it is all stuff that gets covered in the briefings at track day sessions.

The good points about the day were that you got some tuition (again, you can get this on track days if you ask the instructors there), you borrowed a bike and you could borrow all of the gear if you needed it.

It is expensive and you could easily get yourself a set of second hand leathers and a whole day on track for the same price.
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G
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PostPosted: 13:40 - 22 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably need a little work to that knee, but some 20 2-piece leathers with sliders - https://www.facebook.com/groups/514270802036880/permalink/944589065671716/
(You do need to be a member of the group - they are size 40 if you are interested.)
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Blue_SV650S
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PostPosted: 21:47 - 22 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

How confident a rider are you on the road?

If you a not that confident, then I think the school might yield benefit as you will have a classroom session first to learn what is what, hopefully giving you confidence to go out and practice.

If you are reasonably confident already, then you will probably get more VFM from a standard trackday. If you have a mate that is a similar sort of skill level to you (on the road) then get them to go too, you will help each other out. Smile
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davethekwak
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PostPosted: 18:23 - 25 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

New to forum but wanted to add my tuppence worth.
Old git who returned to bikes july last year after a 27 year break. Bought myself a ZX6r (G2). Took the girl along to Rockingham in september just to watch what went on. Paid my cash and got out on track after first session having never been on a track before.
What I learnt.....
Being slow doesn't matter, trying to push to hard is bad.
You will get quicker as the day goes on.
People are generally really friendly
You will get tired as the day goes on.
You dont need any fancy equipment.
You WILL have a blast.
Managing to pass another bike makes you feel like a real racer.
You will get hooked.
I'd thought about doing a session at a school but it really isn't necessary, just make use of the free instruction available.
Me on my first track day
http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y42/DavidHNR/downloadh_240916_9766_rockingham_zpscn2v44gb.jpg
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supZ
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PostPosted: 12:55 - 27 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

MarJay wrote:
The Haslam school and many others are good if you've already got track experience, but not so good as the first outing. Although I've also heard what you have about it being more of an experience day, so perhaps that doesn't matter so much.


bit late to the post but I completely disagree with the first bit.

the whole point of the ron haslam school is to introduce riders that have never been on track before to a bit of track riding.

i did it years ago mistakenly thinking it was a tuition day to improve my riding. boy was i wrong.

when asked who's been on track before only 20% of the group put their hand up

the guy they first paired me with had never even been on a sports bike before.

didn't even bother braking in the 1st session as we were going too slow.

got told i was very fast (i'm not) and paired with someone they thought was faster for the 2nd session.. still laughably slow.

overall it was a good day out but i learnt nothing (other but being told what i was doing was right) but for someone who had some track experience at that time it was a bit of a waste of time.

to someone who has never been on track before and wants some pointers/an easy introduction to it, i think it's spot on.

incidentally at that point i'd only done 12 trackdays.. not like i'd been racing for years or anything.

I think the Jamie Whitham one is largely the same if its anything like the Chris Walker school (i came to watch a mate do it a few years ago)

CSS is a bit different as it breaks down your riding into chunks and works on those aspects.. that I would suggest is for a more experienced rider. But damn is it expensive.

---

to the OP. my first trackday 7+ years ago was cadwell park. not exactly known as the simplest of tracks for the novice. went at my own pace and loved every minute of it. i think the ron haslam school has merit for a novice and not risking your own bike/leathers is a bonus (i wore my own) but nothing beats experience and you'll get far more track time on a trackday than you would at one of the schools.

to echo mayjay, in this years season i want to do a lot more trackdays so if we do end up on the same one i'll happily help if i can. i've shadowed friends on their 1st days before, given the odd pointer where i can. certainly not the fastest either, done some club racing but not much, but i have a few years experience under my belt. that said i do refuse to go in novice, i don't like how unpredictable they can be so don't know if i could help if i'm not in the same group, but we'll see.. Smile

that said, the instructors for no limits/focused etc.. are normally more than happy to go out with you and give you some advice. those guys are far better riders than i am (although i have had some fun with them over the years in a um friendly manner, heh)
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G
The Voice of Reason



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PostPosted: 13:11 - 27 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

supZ wrote:

I think the Jamie Whitham one is largely the same

It's not.

It costs about twice as much as a normal trackday.
There's the normal number of trackday sessions and we even had an open pitlane at the end too!

You get put in groups of ten with an instructor per group.
There was 2x10 novice groups, 2x10 inters and 1x10 fast at Mallory.

There's a 'classroom' between sessions with your assigned instructor.
For me I got pretty much nothing from the day apart from improving my lines a bit - I hadn't ridden Mallory for ten years and with there only being 11 people on track in total, there wasn't many others to follow.
You do get pictures included and we got a load with half the bikes on track.

The other people I was with were much more impressed with the day and that seemed to be the same with other punters too. I did go there with an open mind and do want to learn - but unfortunately it wasn't really suited to my position.

For the money, it may well be a good introduction for many new riders - though I still suspect it may be more beneficial to do a trackday or two first.
Then you can get used to track riding without paying out, then get them to aim your learning in the right direction.
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supZ
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PostPosted: 14:10 - 27 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does sound largely the same from your description but with over twice as much track time it could be a much better option.

The one thing I didn't mention was when I was hanging around at the Chris Walker one I had a chat with Chris about it. I was racing at EMRA at the time mostly at Mallory so know the track pretty well. Was talking to him about whether the school is worth doing for someone like me (not saying I'm quick or anything, just have a few years track experience) vs my mate who'd been on track once in his life for half a day.

He basically said that as the instructors are all BSB riders they have a wide range of ability and can step up to whatever your level is, so you're not stuck wobbling around with slower riders. He even said if you're a lot faster than others they might go 1 on 1 with you so you get the most out of it.

Sounded good.

From your description it sounds like Jamie doesn't have as many instructors available to do that which is a shame.

Does sound like a better option for the novice though considering the tracktime you get, although, they don't supply bikes though do they?

Twice as much cash to have someone give you a bit of advice that an instructor at a trackday could give you for free? hmm maybe not such a good idea
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groovylee
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PostPosted: 16:21 - 27 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

my first trackday ever was done at Lydden. i stupidly got persuaded to enter in inters (i know) and was shitting myself. Bishbash on here offered to coach me a bit, seeing as it was my first time on track.

i needn't have worried, the sessions went well, i wasn't the slowest guy on the track (well, my bike wasn't, but i may have been lol) and no kittens were killed.

a few others had their first time on track that day, and had a real blast.

dont sweat it, and go out in novices - you'll be fine!

oh, and i didn't get my knee down Embarassed but next time i will Mr. Green
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Diggs
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PostPosted: 13:25 - 30 Jan 2017    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did a Cadwell 'school' on Yamaha 400s years ago as a mate's 40th birthday present. It is a good introduction to riding on a track, but nothing you wouldn't get for less money if you go and do an actual track day yourself on your own bike.

Remember though, 'Novice' covers a broad spectrum of riders so don't be intimidated if you can't keep up with some. There are the genuine novices, occasional trackday riders (such as myself) and what I call the seal-clubbers. Seal-clubbers are the twinks of the novice group and get their kicks by not moving to the inters or fast group, instead preferring to wave their willies as they hoon past with their tuned suspension and sticky tyres. Admit it, we all know at least one of these!!!
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